Housing Minister 'disappointed' as latest homelessness figures show record high

Update 10.18am: The Housing Minister has admitted he is "disappointed" by today's figures showing a record 8,800 people are registered as homeless.

The latest homeless figures have led to renewed calls for the Government to declare a national emergency.

Eoghan Murphy claims he had been "anticipating" the increase which he has blamed on the tail end of the financial crisis.

The Minister said the "bottom line" was a lack of supply.

"That's why we do have this dedicated funding stream under Rebuilding Ireland. That's why if we look at all the build indicators all of them are going in the right direction and all of them there is going to be a dramatic increase in housing next year," he said.

"Whether we're talking about the reasons the increase in homelessness, particularly economic homelessness or the rising rents as well - not enough homes are being built," he reiterated.

Peter McVerry said the current efforts are not working.

"They introduced this plan to reduce homelessness 17 months ago and since then every month the number of homeless people has gone up and up and up," he said.

Earlier: Homeless figures have risen to a record high of 8,800 people.

Among them are more than 3,300 children who accessed emergency accommodation services last month.

The November figures from the Housing Department show an average increase of 4% on the numbers from October.

Meanwhile, rents are now 7% higher than their Celtic Tiger peak.

The latest report from the Residential Tenancies Board shows rents have gone up 9.5% percent over the last year alone.

The average national rent now stands at €1,056 Euro per month - up from €965 in 2016.

- Digital desk

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